As per the American Psychological Association, psychology as a science benefits the entire society and enhances our everyday lives.
Through this branch of science, psychologists study the functioning of our brain and their observations acquaint us with the ways in which people think, react and feel.
This enlightenment and understanding helps us to predict human behavior in repeated situations. Ultimately, this knowledge empowers us to understand the behavior and reactions of the people around us.
But why do we call psychology as a branch of science?
William James, an American philosopher and psychologist defined psychology as the science of mental life. This was because just as any other science, it is also based on empiric proofs, keen observations and evidence-based conclusions/predictions.
Let’s move towards the exploration of psychology as a science, starting from its impact on our everyday lives:
- Psychological theories explain certain behavior and responses:
Eminent psychologists have proposed theories about the assumptions and possibilities of certain human behavior traits in specific situations. These findings help us to understand the thought process of human beings, in pre-empting their behavior and expected repercussions in given situations.
Let me cite an example from a research to explain this better.
BF Skinner‘s Operant Conditioning/Behaviorism Theory is based on the ‘Law of Effect’, which shows a close relationship between the response and behavior. It states that behavior can lead to positive or negative reinforcement basis the response evoked in similar situations (in the past).
This theory is one of the best examples to help us understand why is psychology considered a science. It shows a concrete way to predict human behavior in a repeated situation (as per the initial research). The findings of this theory are not only limited to a theoretical understanding of behavior. But it also has some great implications in our everyday life.
In the education industry, the reinforcement theory is the basis of behavior
management of students and this technique is a part of every teacher training
Teachers in a top accredited online school or in-campus institutions practically use reinforcement in their classrooms every day to motivate students to repeat desirable behavior.
Other than these academic uses, this knowledge of responses and behavior is also helpful in other life situations/stages as well. I am sure you must have heard of R&R programs (Rewards and Recognition) in organizations. These are some ways of reinforcing adults i.e. the employee’s behavior.
- Helps to address societal challenges:
Psychological scientists across the world foster international peace by helping in situations of conflict. They address numerous challenges of the society such as decision-making, mental health issues and environmental hazards.
Let’s take up another example in our exploration of psychology as ascience.
Albert Bandura’s Social Cognitive Theory explains why an individual engages/behaves in a particular manner. It also throws light on the importance of modeling behavior, expectations, self-control, etc.
The takeaways of this theory are perfect to comprehend the importance of an individual’s environment in fostering desirable behavior. Hence, it showcases the importance of creating a positive environment for a sustainable future. Researches have proved that this theory is immensely helpful in areas like education, social policymaking and psychotherapy, etc.
- Fosters learning:
By this time, we have gained insights into why is psychology considered a science. So, let’s move to its dimensions that foster learning.
Applied psychological science aims at understanding the human learning process within the academic settings and even beyond these (Lifelong learning).
Educational psychology studies the ideal ways in which an individual absorbs and
retains information. It improves the process of creating educational strategies, approaches,
settings and pedagogies that foster the student’s overall learning.
These theories/findings/researches are the foundation of the instructional delivery in the best online high school and have continued to guide stakeholders to create an effective learning environment.
Other than this, psychology as a science also covers emotional, social and cognitive processes and supports the learner’s development at all stages of formal education.
Psychology as a science also helps in addressing learning challenges/disabilities
such as ADHD, Dysgraphia, Dyslexia, Dyscalculia, etc.
The insights of educational psychology help teachers, students and counselors to plan a way forward for each student. It aids the process of eliminating learning barriers from the lives of the not-so-fortunate learners.
- Inculcates skills for a better quality of life:
Our exploration of psychology as ascience is incomplete without its implications for our relationships. This study of mind and behavior improves the quality of interpersonal interactions and the capacity to handle varied situations.
It motivates an individual to sharpen his/her inherent skill sets and these advanced abilities (like improved communication and mutual trust) in turn strengthens relationships by reducing ambiguity and complexities.
Psychology as a science is significant to focus on the Emotional Quotient (EQ) of a
student, rather than only the Intelligence Quotient (IQ), a characteristic that is often
After the exploration of psychology as a science, it’s now time to see how we can use this study of behavior in our everyday lives-
- To identify one’s strengths/thinking style:
This aspect is crucial for many of us across different situations in life. As a student or even as an employee our style of thinking determines our success. Applying psychology in real life situations gives us the strength to bank upon our proven strengths.
It also gives us the motivation to refrain from impractical experimentation, because our human mind acts most creatively and productively with the best suitable thinking style.
This level of self-awareness helps to materialize the definition of psychology in real life. It enhances the overall quality of work by choosing the right learning/working style for the best possible outcomes.
For instance, an employee who masters the skill of analysis might fail miserably in a sales profile. So, the idea is to know what works best for you, play along with it and be safe by using inherent strengths for the best results!
- To improve the decision-making process:
This one is another interesting reason why is psychology considered a science. This logical study gives us loads of information to analyze varied perspectives for a better decision-making process.
What all would you consider while making a decision?
Positives, negatives, emotional, financial and many more aspects. Isn’t all this easy if you have already mastered the art of weighing the pros and cons before making a choice? This science will empower you to scrutinize all aspects and your decisions will be more stable and accurate.
- To understand the signs of body language:
By applying this study of behavior, an individual has an edge in knowing people better.
The advanced ability to understand body language or nonverbal cues, make an
individual more cautious or sure about the other person’s intentions.
Psychology as a science gives the power to gauge one’s true feelings through body language signs such as:
- Tilting head on one side- listening carefully
- Standing up straight- feeling confident
- Rubbing hands- excitement
- Crossing legs pointing knees away from another person- hiding something
- Establish trust in relationships:
The definition of psychology that aims at improving human lives mostly covers relationships at each step. This science reiterates the importance of rapport building, personalization, effective communication to build and earn the most important foundation of our relationships- Trust!
This knowledge helps us with our relationships as we learn how to take time before reacting, being honest and true to our words. All this makes us consistent to enjoy a fulfilling life with stable and close-knit relationships.
The Cognitive Dissonance Theory by Benjamin Franklin can be applied in our real lives by asking for a favor to judge if someone is good enough for a relationship/friendship.
- Feel good about yourself:
It’s important to reward yourself to keep the momentum of motivation going. Our knowledge and exploration of psychology as ascience can help us to understand the importance of managing things well and appreciating ourselves enough for a sense of self-worth.
It is like a periodic dose of happiness that we give our brain to train it for a similar or better outcome next time. This study of behavior instills the power to unleash one’s true potential and most importantly celebrate one’s existence time and again.
The understanding of psychology is the cornerstone of a successful life. It helps us to understand our relationships, highlight potential threats and foster a scientific attitude in us.
Hope this piece of information could give you some valuable takeaways about applied psychology.
Thanks for Reading!